When They Go Low, We Go High 10 Sep 2018
The European Parliament’s decision not to immediately pass the new EU Copyright Directive in July was seen by many as a major setback. It was defeated by 318 to 278, a margin of 40 votes. This means the proposed legislation now moves forward to a full plenary debate and vote next Wednesday 12 September.
As the music industry faces this pivotal moment, it is worth reflecting how we got here and what we are now facing.
The creative industries as a whole have long argued that embryonic digital legislation passed in the mid 1990s is outdated and simply not fit for purpose. The legislative process is slow at the best of times. Meanwhile, the tech industry “moved fast and broke things,” incurring the wrath of creators whose livelihoods have been upended as a result.
The publication of the draft EU Copyright Directive in late 2016 was an achievement in itself. Not only did the draft legislation address copyright protection and safe harbour loopholes, it also contained provisions concerning fairness and transparency towards creators. Following further debate and lobbying, is even more of an achievement that the key elements of the draft directive remain mostly intact.
The Directive has not been without it’s critics, as is the case with any proposed legislation. Academics, libraries and dignitaries such as Sir Tim Berners-Lee have all put forth concerns. We in the music industry can acknowledge some concerns as understandable even if we believe they are unfounded.
What is not understandable are the thoroughly vile and dishonest tactics deployed during the course of this year, whose objective is to stop the legislation in its tracks at any cost. The scale of this activity reads like set pieces straight out of the Cambridge Analytica playbook.
Some in the music industry have questioned how we fight back given the vast funding involved and the sheer scale of this enterprise. But fight back we must and the actions of those we face only serve to give us greater strength.
As any Jiu-Jitsu grandmaster will tell you: use your opponents’ force against them. In this case, we should call out the deceitful actions from within the tech sector and elsewhere and those actions speak louder than any words.
The Financial Times reported some MEPs received death threats
MEPs were each bombarded with over 60,000 emails from bots
These emails contained identical content according to The Trichordist
The same blog named the domain name from which a large number of these emails originated and its link to a US Inc. entity.
The same tactics have been found on Twitter: multiple bot accounts promoting #SaveOurInternet and similar hashtags
This contrasts to real world protests that only drew a few hundred protestors combined across Europe. The bots did not show up.
These actions must also be viewed against the current backdrop where tech firms have been scrutinised for avoiding responsibility concerning:
Blatantly dishonest content
Content that incites hatred and violence
Little accountability in how such content is disseminated
Minimal transparency in how user data is abused in facilitating all this
Mark Zuckerberg and Jack Dorsey are amongst those tech executives rebuked by lawmakers on both sides of the Atlantic, for failing to take responsibility and failing to act in managing their own platforms. This is reflective of a broader failure that lies at the heart of a misguided and libertarian ideal, that somehow tech firms are exempt from laws and rules that govern the rest of the world.
The music industry and broader creative and media industries are made up of real people, filled with passion and blood pumping through their veins. They compose their own emails, speak to politicians and show up in person.
At the UK Music organized #LoveMusic busking event in London earlier today, artists, executives and even politicians turned out in support. Artists such as Brett Anderson, Ed Harcourt, Dave Rowntree, Madeleina Kay, Newton Faulkner and BASCA Chair Crispin Hunt. In addition a number of cross party British MPs who support the directive including Tom Watson, Nigel Evans and Kevin Brennan were amongst those in attendance.
One has to ask, if those opposing the EU Copyright Directive have such a compelling argument, why do they resort to such deceitful means? If we judge their actions, the arguments of those opposed to the directive hold no legitimacy and the European Parliament should vote in favour of the directive.
Andy Edwards, music manager and consultant
NEWS & PRESS
New, unsigned artists are chosen for Gilles Peterson-backed talent development scheme Application opens from Friday 10th July - Friday 14th August 2020 Open to any unsigned artist based in England Please apply here The Future Bubblers team are excited to announce the opening of...more
Yoop, an entertainment company developing products to help creators distribute content directly to fans, has announced the global expansion of its interactive virtual events platform, Yoop eSpace.Yoop eSpace launched in Montreal, Canada in June, showcasing the platform’s advanced interactive functionality...more
Re-recording of iconic anthem will support UNICEF’s Reimagine campaign, a global fundraising appeal to respond, recover and reimagine a post-COVID-19 world fit for children. Members of the Marley family will reimagine the late Bob Marley’s iconic anthem One Love to support...more
Warner Classics launches the 3D Classical Collection, exclusively on Amazon MusicA playlist of 35 classical tracks from the London Philharmonic Orchestra available in Dolby Atmos Music on Amazonâ€™s Echo Studio device
A playlist of 35 classical tracks from the London Philharmonic Orchestra available in Dolby Atmos Music on Amazon’s Echo Studio device Warner Classics is launching the 3D Classical Collection – a spectacular playlist of 35 of the greatest classical tracks recorded...more
Industry Leader Joining Company in Newly Created Worldwide Role Warner Music Group announced today that industry leader Eric Wong is joining the company as President & Chief Marketing Officer (CMO), Warner Recorded Music, effective August 17th. Wong, who is currently Chief...more
Get ready for the International Booker Prize and Deezer to take you on an immersive journey into this yearâ€™s shortlisted novels
Deezer and Booker Prize join forces to pair music with literature in new ‘Sounds of…’ series Hit play and let six dedicated playlists set the mood to the most anticipated stories of the year Not sure which book to start with first?...more
Music production guidance published to enable professional music production to restart with confidence and clarity Music organisations AIM (Association of Independent Music), BPI (British Phonographic Industry), MPG (Music Producers Guild) and the MU (Musicians' Union) are today announcing the publication of...more
The Ivors Academy and the Musiciansâ€™ Union warn that a new wave of buyout deals damage composersâ€™ rights and careers
The Ivors Academy and the Musicians’ Union warn that a new wave of buyout deals damage composers’ rights and careers The Ivors Academy and the Musicians’ Union have warned that a new partnership between Epidemic Sound and Adobe is part of...more
Live Nation expands partnership with MelodyVR and launches virtual concerts live from London’s O2 Academy Brixton Following the momentous success of Wireless Connect, Live Nation U.K. and MelodyVR today announce Live From O2 Academy Brixton, a pioneering new live experience connecting artists...more
New research has found that UK commercial radio stations increased their commitment to news and information significantly in the months since lockdown began, broadcasting 25% more news bulletins on average that last 28% longer. These findings form part of a new...more
No Specific Support For Nightclubs Or Late Night Venues In Chancellor's Statement – Industry Is Falling Through The Cracks
Michael Kill, Chief Executive of the Night-Time Industries Association said:‘Whilst there is much to be welcomed in this announcement for many businesses, it leaves many in our sector beleaguered. Most of our members either can’t open at all due to...more
Reacting to Chancellor Rishi Sunak’s summer statement today, UK Music Acting CEO Tom Kiehl said:“The music industry is in crisis and we need VAT exemptions, which would be a lifeline for the thousands who work in the music industry.“We will...more
Today, Sony/ATV Music Publishing announced it has signed the Swedish songwriter, producer, and multi-instrumentalist Linus “Lotus IV” Wiklund to a global publishing agreement. Linus Wiklund is one of today’s most in-demand hitmakers, having written popular singles including “Happy Now” by...more
He will help spearhead Songkick’s transformation as the live music scene evolves Alexey Blinov has been named VP, Technology at Songkick, the live music discovery service. He’ll be based in London and report to Songkick’s Managing Director Bill Ashton. Blinov will oversee...more
Leadership Team Bolstered as Edgar Machuca, Olly Sheppard, and Devon Libran Promoted to VP Roles Seasoned exec Corey Calder has joined Artist Partner Group (APG) as SVP, Marketing & Brands. The company has also made three strategic promotions to bolster its...more
Sunday July 19 @ 8pm Top 10 Album 'RITUALS' Out Now As only one of a handful of British guitar bands to achieve a top 10 album in 2018 with their fifth studio album Rituals, UK 4-piece Deaf Havana toured extensively throughout 2019. With 2020 unfolding as...more
Taskforce submits letter to Scottish government, calling for vital support for the sector Letter signed by artists, festivals, venues and more including Belladrum Festival, Biffy Clyro, Deacon Blue, Eddi Reader, KT Tunstall, Mogwai, Primal Scream, Riverside Festival, Scottish Event Campus, Simple...more
Multi-year partnership to further accelerate growth of Indian non-film music market Universal Music India to exclusively distribute Desi Melodies’ popular audio catalog and future releases worldwide Universal Music India (UMI), a division of Universal Music Group (UMG), the world leader in music-based...more
Today, Sony/ATV Music Publishing announced it has signed the rapper, songwriter and artist Bobby Sessions to a global co-publishing deal. Bobby, among his many achievements in music, is well known for co-writing the Covid-19 benefit song “Savage Remix” by Megan...more
Sophie Ellis-Bextor has announced her brand-new podcast ‘Spinning Plates’, which launches today and sees Sophie chat to successful women about the balance between motherhood and their working lives. Spinning Plates is part of the Acast creator network, the UK’s leading...more
Wide Days is pleased to announce details of its virtual event, with a packed programme of panels, interviews, live performances, sector meetings, social activities and a range of networking options taking place from 23–25 July. Supported by the National Lottery through Creative Scotland,...more
Digital marketing offering officially launches alongside PR and radio plugging services Rock and metal specialist music PR and radio plugging agency Hold Tight! PR has relaunched as HOLD TIGHT, a multi-faceted music marketing agency offering print & online PR, radio plugging, strategic...more
UK Music Acting CEO Tom Kiehl:“A £1.57bn support package for the arts is a huge step forward and should be a lifesaver for many music venues. Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden, Chancellor Rishi Sunak and DCMS Minister Caroline Dinenage are to be...more
Kasabian have announced today that Tom Meighan is stepping down from the band by mutual consent. Tom has struggled with personal issues that have affected his behaviour for quite some time and now wants to concentrate all his energies on getting...more
The Association of Independent Festivals (AIF) calls for urgent clarity on the eligibility of the UK’s festival sector for the Government’s recently announced financial support package for the arts. While the Government’s announcement specifically earmarked a range of cultural sectors that...more
Today, Sony/ATV Music Publishing announced it has signed a global publishing administration agreement with the multi-platinum, award-winning songwriter and producer Freddy Wexler. Freddy is a veteran songwriter known for crafting iconic hits including “Be Kind” by Marshmello and Halsey, and...more
Companies to Co-Produce and Co-Finance Slate of Music-Centered Film and Television Projects Imagine Entertainment Chairman Brian Grazer and Warner Music Group (WMG) today announced a multi-year strategic partnership to co-produce and co-finance a slate of music-centered projects across multiple mediums, including...more
- Cultural and heritage organisations to be protected with £1.57 billion support package - Future of Britain's museums, galleries, theatres, independent cinemas, heritage sites and music venues will be protected with emergency grants and loans - Funding will also be provided to...more
Fusing climate policy and culture - Music Declares Climate Emergency meets European Commissioner Mariya Gabriel
Earlier this week, Music Declares Emergency and IMPALA had a video meeting with Mariya Gabriel, the European Commissioner responsible for culture, innovation, research, education and youth. Music Declares Climate Emergency, the recipient of IMPALA's 2019 Outstanding Contribution Award, is an...more
Omah Lay Is the Inaugural Artist and Cover Star of the Companion Playlist Apple Music today announced Africa Rising, a new bi-monthly artist program and companion playlist geared towards identifying, showcasing and elevating rising African talent. Nigerian-born, Afro-fusion singer and songwriter...more
Sony buys stake in Fortnite maker Epic Games (see Business)
Midyear analysis of the US market shows album audio consumption up; sales down (see Analysis)
Samantha Moy appointed 6 Music's Head of Station (see Media)
Spotify: Launches in Russia next week; doubles down on fraud allegations against Sosa Entertainment; strikes podcast advertising deal (see Digital)
Covid-19: WHO acknowledges evidence on coronavirus spread - could impact events (see News)
Culture Secretary tweets VAT cut to 5% for 'attractions' including concerts (see News)
YouTube rolls out new analytics hub for creators (see Digital)
Ivors Academy and Musicians’ Union warn partnership between Epidemic Sound and Adobe could undermine royalties for composers (see News)
Composer Ennio Morricone passes away (see News, Features)
Imagine Entertainment and Warner Music Group strike deal (see Business)
The Weeknd and Lewis Capaldi lead half-year sales charts (see News)
Government announces support package for arts sector (see News)
New legislation means analogue signal for radio won't be scrapped until 2032 (see Media)
Deezer partners with Mexican broadcaster; now valued at €1.3bn (see Business)
Hipgnosis aims to raise £200m (see Business)
1,500 musicians sign letter to culture secretary calling for help for venues (see News)
BMG strikes deal with ITV Studios (see Business)
MelodyVR reports financial results (see Business)
Music Venue Trust seeks 'urgent clarification' on building project policy (see News)
Podcast creators find networks own the shows (see Digital)
Artlist raises $48m additional funding (see Business)
Ivors awards ceremony cancelled; winners announced 2 September (see News)
Half-year touring figures analysed (see Analysis)
BRIT Awards date moved (see News)
Music Venues Trust responds to Government 'roadmap' plan (see News)